The relationship between social media and the entrepreneur is a tricky balancing act. On one hand, you have the potential to reach new customers like never before, by directly marketing to them; on the other hand, you also have the potential to alienate new customers, family, and friends like never before, by directly selling at them.
As an entrepreneur, my work is a big part of my life, and as such, it should be suitably reflected in my social media presence….but carefully. While I’m not an expert, I am happy with how I’m managing my social media presence on several platforms. And just as importantly, I’m happy with the returns I’m seeing on each platform. Here’s how and what I am currently doing:
Facebook 897 Friends – Personal: This is where I hang out with friends, family, and a few close colleagues. There’s a plethora of cat photos and funny memes (for various values of “funny”.) I tend to be less guarded about my comments, but I’m still carefully aware that I (and my brand) are being observed by the world at large. I’m also quite careful about what I allow others to post to my wall. I rarely mention voiceover, except as a genuine part of my day-to-day life, and I do not market my services there at all. My friends and family are very rarely in need of professional narration, and if they are, they already know how to reach me. As such, I don’t not expect see business returns from my time on Facebook; however, on rare occasions, I am still pleasantly surprised.
Twitter 1,781 Followers – Collegial: I have devoted my Twitter account to connecting with the voiceover community in its multitude of forms. I have gone out of my way to find voice actors in the various niches of my industry, and from all around the globe. I have curated a list of these good people and freely share that list with everyone. I do not market my services on Twitter. There is almost no point in doing so; voiceover actors do not generally buy voiceover. It would be different if I offered coaching or managerial services to the industry. And therefore the lack of business returns on this platform is okay too. I am sufficiently pleased just to know that I am part of varied community of like-minded folk.
LinkedIn 414 Connections – Professional: As is its intent, I use LinkedIn to network with individuals in adjacent industries; eLearning design, web content generation, and video production. People that might want my services at some point. In other words, potential customers. I minimize family and friend contacts here, and try to avoid most other VO actors. I am still being too stingy with my requests to connect; I reach out to those I have already met in person, or with whom have worked directly, but I hesitate to connect here with strangers (something I do easily on Twitter.) Recently I have taken to following the posts of people I wish to eventually connect with. It’s my intent that by reacting and commenting on their posts, I can build a relationship that is then worth connecting through. The net I cast here is much smaller here than with Facebook or Twitter, but it reaps quality leads that, with work, build into genuine B2B relationships.
Instagram 98 Followers: To be honest, I have no strategy in place for Instagram. Having only signed on in spring of this year, it is my newest platform. So far, I’m just posting photos I am fond of (bowties, cufflinks, fountain pens, and my cat mostly) and I’m following a few friends and hashtags I enjoy (mostly bowties, cufflinks, fountain pens, and other peoples’ cats.) I thought of taking microphone selfies, as I record various projects, but of course they would all look the same, and boring content is worse than no content. My current thought with Instagram is to explore short video content, with me behind the microphone. We shall see in the future.
So that’s my current state of social media usage, and I intend to keep things that way for the foreseeable future. My use of social media is an expression of intent, and that intent defines my audience, and that audience in turn drives my content. I’m not posting the same content to all four platforms; that would be disingenuous. Like any other entrepreneur, I want my brand to be seen as genuine and meaningful.